The Lynchburg News & Advance printed an editorial today that looks at the needs of Virginia’s workforce through the current recession and beyond.
Despite the sour national and global economies, things will turn around, hopefully sooner rather than later. When the economic clouds part, the American worker had better be ready for an even more competitive world.
The editorial explains how Virginia’s Community Colleges, while working through the recession and the government budget challenges that spin-off from it, are focused on the global competitiveness that Virginia communities and employers will need to succeed in the long run.
The commonwealth, in the short run, is facing a budget shortfall of enormous proportions; long term, though, the shortfall in education and competitiveness are of mammoth proportions. Working with private industry, the community college system, in the last decade, has implemented a number of programs and partnerships designed to address the educational challenges the state faces.
The start of the 2009 session of the General Assembly is only weeks away, and the specter of a $3.2 billion shortfall looms over the state Capitol. Now is not the time, though, for Virginia’s leaders to short shrift the future.
Bad economies are ugly and painful, but the only way to minimize their impact is to ensure that individuals and companinies in Virginia are creating and attracting job opportunities and that requires the cutting edge skills and knowledge that more than half a million people are getting through academic and workforce training programs every year at Virginia’s Community Colleges.